SV Tenacious

Designed by Tony Castro, Tenacious is the largest wooden tall ship of her kind in the world. The innovative wood epoxy laminate build started in 1996 with a team made up of skilled designers, engineers, shipwrights and fitters. These were supplemented by a volunteer force of over 1,500 able bodied and disabled people who came on working “Shorewatch” holidays from all over the UK and abroad. The hull was built upside down and in November 1998, the 280-tonne hull was rotated upright prior to fit-out.

The cost of the project was £14.3 million of which £6.5 million was awarded by the Lottery Sports Fund. The balance comes from public, private and corporate fundraising by the JST but there is still £1.6 million to raise.

Since commencing voyages in September 2000, Tenacious has sailed 238,755 nautical miles and taken 13,000 people to sea. Of these nearly 5,000 people were physically disabled and 1,400 were wheelchair users. 

Tenacious’ many facilities enable disabled crew to perform their duties independently alongside their able-bodied shipmates.

The ship has access throughout for disabled crew, including wheelchair users, with flat wide decks and powered lifts. There is a speaking compass, Braille signage and bright track radar for visually impaired crew members. An induction loop and vibrating alarms have been installed for hearing impaired crew members.

There are special cabins, toilets and shower facilities for disabled crew and the ship is fitted with a mess deck, fully equipped galley, workshop and, of course, a well stocked bar and saloon area.

52 Persons total, comprising:
Permanent Crew: Master, First Mate, Second Mate, Bosun, Chief Engineer, Second Engineer, Medical Purser, Cook, two volunteer Bosun’s Mates, volunteer Cook’s Assistant and Deck Officer Cadet.
Voyage Crew: 40 people, 50% of whom may be physically disabled (up to eight wheelchair users). Amongst the voyage crew there will be four Watch Leaders and, where possible, a Doctor.

Keel Laid:  6 June 1996
Launched: 4 February 2000
Maiden Voyage: 1 September 2000
Length overall (hull): 54.0m
Length overall (including bowsprit):    65.0m 
Beam: 10.6m
Max Draft: 4.64m
Masthead height:  42.0m
Sail Area: 1200m² (21 sails)
Speed under sail: 10+ knots 


Whatever kind of adventure holiday or sailing experience you are looking for, the JST has something for you. 

Your adventure can take to ports around the UK, Europe, South America, Africa, Australia or New Zealand

Whether you choose a Day Sail or a month-long passage voyage, with the JST you can get your teeth into as much or as little of the action as you feel comfortable with.

Anyone over the age of 16 can sail with us and we take people from all over the UK and further afield. We aim to take an equal mix of able-bodied and physically disabled crew on each trip with a maximum of 40 people on each voyage. We strive to achieve integration on other levels such as age, background, religion, culture and gender.

To find out more about all the voyages available visit

Sail from Cardiff

From time to time voyages start or finish in Cardiff.

Information will appear here when berths are available.